pistou(makes approximately 2 cups)

This classic French sauce is a salt spiked taste of summer so it is best with grilled meats, tossed with pasta, used as pizza sauce, or stirred into the classic French soupe au pistou. This will hold for couple of weeks in the refrigerator or it can also be frozen well.

A mix of basil and parsley can be used for this recipe. Blanching and shocking tomatoes is the easiest way to peel them. With a paring knife, make a shallow ‘X’ cut on the base of the tomato and cut out the core. Prepare an ice bath. Drop tomatoes into boiling water and let cook until peel starts to fold back or split, 1 to 2 minutes. Drop into ice bath, let cool, and remove peels with paring knife.

8 garlic cloves

2 bunches fresh basil or parsley, stems removed, about 2 cups tightly packed leaves

2 teaspoons salt

2 cups finely grated Parmesan cheese

2 medium sized tomatoes, peeled, seeded and coarsely chopped

1 cup olive oil

In a food processor or blender, add the tomatoes first and then remaining ingredients except olive oil. (Tomatoes go in first to provide liquid to get the dry mixture moving around.) Blend at high speed for about 1 minute. Transfer mixture to a large bowl and stir in olive oil until well combined. The olive oil can be drizzled in to the blended mixture while the blender is running for a more emulsified sauce but some cooks believe blending olive oil gives it a bitter taste.